After seeing Amazon increase its sales 42 percent in the first nine months of 2011, partially due to the success of the Amazon Prime membership program, Google is looking to launch a service that will allow the search engine giant to act as a middle man between shoppers and a local seller, and is currently in talks with Gap, OfficeMax and Macy's to be involved as merchants, according to a report on Time.com.
Prime offers shoppers two day delivery on all items for a $79 annual fee, but Google's program would get the merchandise to the customer within one day. The Wall Street Journal reports that users would search and order items for a fee, as Google attempts to loosen Amazon's grip on the online retail business.
Because online shoppers primarily conduct their searches directly through Amazon, Google does not get advertising revenue on these searches. According to comScore, Amazon receives three to four times as many product related searches as Google does, and as local search advertisement revenue is around $6 billion each year and growing, Google wants to get a bigger piece of the pie. The new program would not be the first retail venture for Google, which previously introduced the Wallet, for making payments with mobile devices, and Google Offers, a daily deals service.
This piece was adapted from an original story on Time.com.
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